Federal agent loses job after using CBD for chronic pain

| Oct 3, 2019 | Employee Rights

A federal agent, who worked a large portion of his almost 30 years as a federal employee with the Department of Homeland Security, was recently fired. The reason for termination: use of CBD oil.

Isn’t CBD oil legal?

In most cases, yes. However, federal agencies are lashing out at workers who use the product. CBD products often contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). As a result, use of the product can trigger a positive drug test for use of marijuana.

Conventional drug testing cannot distinguish between THC from marijuana use or CBD products. This is because conventional testing generally shows that THC is present in the sample but does not provide information on the amount. As a result, those who have a very small amount, as found in CBD products, test positive in the same way those who are using marijuana, which has a much higher level of THC, would get a positive result.

What happens of a federal agent has a positive drug test?

Federal agencies generally have a no-tolerance policy when it comes to THC. Any presence of the amount in a sample, regardless of the quantity, could result in termination.

Is this a common problem?

A spokesperson for the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association stated a “couple dozen” federal enforcement officers are having trouble due to use of CBD products. Data for other federal positions would likely indicate the issue is much larger.

What options are available for federal employees facing termination?

Those who find themselves facing an investigation, discipline and potential termination are wise to act to protect their interests. An attorney experienced in federal employment matters can review the situation and discuss your options.

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